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Goalie left unable to smile

PUBLISHED: 21:05 28 December 2002 | UPDATED: 13:15 03 March 2010

YOUNG goalie Elliott Crockett was left unable to smile, after his jaw was shattered in a junior match.

But now he's beaming again after a Christmas gift to remember - thanks to the generosity of the opposition team.

YOUNG goalie Elliott Crockett was left unable to smile, after his jaw was shattered in a junior match.

But now he's beaming again after a Christmas gift to remember – thanks to the generosity of the opposition team.

Nine-year-old Elliott was left with a shattered jaw after a spectacular save for Wickham Market Under 10's goalkeeper in a local clash rival team St Johns in October.

But rather than just put it down as a typical football injury, St Johns arranged for him to receive a Christmas present he'll never forget – a ball signed by his Ipswich Town heroes.

Ipswich legend Roger Osborne presented the get-well gift to the soccer-mad youngster, and former player of the year, who took up football three years ago after his mum died.

His grandma Sylvia Owens, from The Street, in Wickham Market, said: "Elliott went to save a goal and his jaw hit the ground. There was a lot of blood and two fractures to his jaw.

"We spent the whole day in hospital but the doctor said as he was a child the bone should set naturally.

"It's a great shame because Elliott hasn't been able to play football since the accident. It's a wonderful surprise for him."

St John's coach Andy Holland arranged for Ipswich players to sign the football and for Osborne – who gained immortality in Ipswich after scoring the only goal of the 1978 FA Cup final – to make the presentation.

He said: "Elliott is a great goalie. We gave him Ipswich Town FC vouchers after the accident and then decided to do this.

"We hope it cheers him up over Christmas."

But Elliott's gran – who is not a footie fan - was underwhelmed by the star credentials of the former midfielder who presented the football.

She admitted: "I must say I've never heard of Roger Osborne. Is he famous?"

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